Sony has announced that it is expanding the Closed Beta testing for PlayStation Home in summer 2008, inviting more PS3 users to get involved in the testing.

When this "Expanded Closed Beta test" is complete, the gaming giant says the PlayStation Home Open Beta service, Sony's online virtual world for gamers, will finally start in autumn 2008.

"We understand that we are asking PS3 and prospective PS3 users to wait a bit longer, but we have come to the conclusion that we need more time to refine the service to ensure a more focused gaming entertainment experience than what it is today", said Kazuo Hirai, president and CEO, Sony.

"Our overarching objective is to provide users with new gaming experiences that are available only on PlayStation Home. Spending more time on the development and on the Closed Beta testing reaffirms our commitment to bringing a quality service, maintaining the PlayStation tradition."

Details of the Closed Beta testing features, registration for the test and the opening of the service will be announced as they become available.